I wrote 39 fics this year (18 more than last year), so I’m gonna talk about them because why not.
questions from here:
1. What’s your personal favourite thing you wrote this year?
Roles :P. Which is sort of strange, considering it’s Smith domming, and that’s rare. But I like it a lot. It’s hot, it’s fun. It’s good. It did really well.
I also like Clean a lot, but that’s a completely unsurprising guilty pleasure :P.
The Color of Blood has done decently in terms of like at the end of this year, which is nice. I enjoyed writing it, and I wish there was more fantastical, world-building-heavy stories, because they’re just so cool.
2. What’s your least favourite thing you wrote this year?
My Yuletide fic, Promotion. Even though the author I gifted it to really liked it. It wasn’t as polished, and I didn’t have the motivation/time to make it what I really wanted.
Some of the sequels to things, also, I don’t really like as much. Partly because they didn’t get as much attention/commentary, when that was what I was searching for.
3. Which of your fics was most different from what you usually write?
I wrote a few different fandom experiments this year: H/igh R/oll/ers fic, a dip into the Hamilton fandom, and a secret-santa Yuletide gift.
And much more experimenting with different kink fics, making smaller series, and more one-shots.
Songbird, I think, was the most different, simply because it stood on it’s own and was the first alternate UMY idea I posted. Honor, additionally, was a small thing in which I stepped a little outside my comfort zone, and into a more realistic fic setting.
4. Which of your fics this year was most successful?
Overlooking the one Hamilton fic I did, Obedient Servant (because holy frickin crap, did that get a ridiculous amount of hits/kudos):
Respect, the second fic in the Military Kink series to obey and command.
The entire series has done better than I expected, being really well-liked. And fun to write, too.
(You people really like your rougher stuff, huh? :P)
here lies the water, here stands the man and I would not wish any companion in the world but you both did very well for UMY.
Personal Space and Sweeter Than Chocolate were also extremely popular.
(You people love your pining Troffy, too, huh?)
5. Which of your fics do you wish was more successful?
It’s hard to judge things that were posted later in the year versus earlier in the year, because there’s been less time. But I wish ‘Tis safer to be that which we destroy did better, especially because of how excited I was about it when I was working on it/posted it.
6. What’s your favourite piece of dialogue you wrote this year?
7. What’s your favourite piece of description or narration?
This year was definitely the year of dialogue. There was so much good stuff. It’s the first thing I get down in writing, and then I fill in description.
Here’s a giant section from ‘Tis safer to be that which we destroy, the argument at the end between Trott and Sips, that I still think turned out really well.
Trott turns away from him and busies himself with putting away the silverware, opening the cabinet drawer loudly and sorting the forks and knives. The metal clatters loudly in the drawer organizer.
“You don’t need to do that,” Sips objects, not talking about the dishes at all.
I don’t want to see you get hurt for me. Sips swallows thickly, looking back at Trott with grief-stricken fear in his eyes. “Does that magic do what I think it does?” he asks tersely, glancing down at Trott’s hand and back up again. He steps forward and reaches for Trott again, but the selkie pulls away.
Sips lets out a breath through his teeth, blinking heavily. “What happens, then, huh?” he whispers, “What happens if it’s you instead of me?”
Trott shoves the drawer shut hard and stares at his feet.
“Do you really think Smith and Ross wouldn’t tear the city apart in grief?” Sips asks quietly.
“We’d do the same if it was you,” Trott says, determined.
Sips stares up at the ceiling and lets out a haggard breath. “Fucking dammit, Trott.” He sighs in exasperation. “I know you care, but I don’t want you or Ross or Smith to sacrifice yourselves for me.” The mortal king shakes his head and looks back down. “You can’t fix all our problems by yourself. We’re a court. Whatever comes for us, we should be fighting that together.”
“You don’t know what we’re up against-”
“Then tell me, for fuck’s sake!” he exclaims, “What do you know that I don’t?”
“A lot more about how this world works, Sips,” Trott says snidely.
“Why don’t you stop keeping fucking secrets, then! You can’t solve anything like that,” Sips snaps back, “And what about Angor? What about him? I thought we agreed to solve that together-”
“I’ll pay for it-” Trott states.
“Just like you’ll pay for trying to keep me from dying? Death isn’t the fucking answer, Trott,” he hisses.
Trott says nothing. His good hand is clenched into a fist atop the countertop.
“You have them to take care of, too,” Sips says softly, “Not just me. You have them to think of. And that should include yourself.”
Trott turns and slowly meets his eyes.
“I’m not that important. I’m not some saint or martyr, I’m just some mortal,” Sips stammers, “I don’t deserve you to die for me. Fuck being king, what worth is it, if you did that?” He’s shaking. His hands are clenched at his sides. He wants to move closer to Trott but he’s afraid Trott will pull away again.
Trott says nothing for a long moment, staring hard with his lips pursed into a thin line. “Let me show you something,” he says bitterly, pulling a chair out from under the dining room table and gesturing for Sips to sit down.
Sips sits, his back to Trott, and Trott covers his eyes with his hands.
The magic rushes into him, and Sips swoons with the power of it, holding on tight to the chair as if he might fall off. In the blackness, he can see the ley lines that hold every debt together, every bond between them and the rest of the world. Between fae, between humans, and between themselves.
A spiraling tendril of silver magic stretches around himself, to Trott, and Ross and Smith in the other room. Like neurons on the covers of Trott’s science magazines. Sips can see the bonds between his court as well, the murky purple of Ross and Smith, and the ocean blue of Smith and Trott. The magic pushes his vision wider, and he can see stretches of debts and power linked between them and others, stretching out into the world.
“Do you understand now?” Trott whispers, “Do you see? Look at the lines, Sips.”
Staring at it makes his skin burn.
“There’s magic in what we do, and all those lines are interconnected,” Trott continues, “This isn’t just you, and this isn’t just me. It’s not just about keeping you safe.
“The fall of a court is the fall of a king.”
8. Which fic this year was most fun to write?
Roles or Clean, probably; the entire Military Kink series. Which is really telling- the fics that have done the best this year have been the ones I enjoyed writing the most. That’s probably why.
Of my UMY fics this year, Misery acquaints a man with strange bedfellows remains as enjoyable to read as it was to write.
eligere facere bonum, also, and Faster, Higher, Stronger, written with Three, were great steps outside my normal fare and turned out well writing-wise, I think. Doctor Smith AU was more of a challenge to figure out at first, but I like a good challenge every once in a while.
9. If you could go back and change something about one of the fics you wrote this year, what would it be?
constant as the northern star was something I was originally really disappointed with, but not so much now. That being said, though, I wish I could go back, finish the smut, and add on more descriptions and better condense it. It feels unfinished, in a way, because there was more I wanted out of the story and didn’t have the motivation/anything to finish it the way I wanted.
10. What, if anything, are you going to try to do differently in your writing in the new year?
Focus less on wanting the feedback, and enjoying the act of writing again more than the act of posting. Interaction has seemed to be on a decline, even though the fandom has increased it’s commentary. And I love the few comments I do get- that’s why this fandom is higher up in my mind than Hamilton, even though that fic I wrote for it exploded.
It’s hard to balance the want for attention with the reality that no one owes you anything- and I understand that.
This year, the fandom died a little more. And I’m just not ready to give up on it. I have many more stories I want to finish. So I hope you’ll stick with me for that.
And if not, safe travels to you, my friend.
Here’s to the next.